Barcelona are edging closer to finalising a deal for Brazil international Arthur Melo this summer, according to reports in Spain.

The 21-year-old, who currently plays for Grêmio, was expected to move to Catalonia in January 2019 after an agreement was reached between both clubs.


However, the departure of Andrés Iniesta coupled with an injury to academy prospect Carles Aleñá has seen the club's officials eager to fast track a move for Arthur to this summer, according to Mundo Deportivo.

It is claimed that talks between the two clubs are at such an advanced stage where Arthur's agent, Jorge Machado, is just waiting for the all clear from Barcelona before they travel to Europe.

A presentation for the young midfielder is rumoured to be in the pipeline for next week, with Arthur set to become the club's first major signing of the summer.

The aforementioned Aleñá will be a part of Barcelona's first team on a regular basis next season following his promotion from the B team. José Manuel Arnáiz has also made the step up to their senior squad this summer, as well as defenders Sergi Palencia and Marc Cucurella.


Barcelona have also seen a number of players return from loan spells away from the club this summer, although many are expected to be shipped out once again. Gerard Deulofeu has already left the club on a permanent basis, with Rafinha and Marlon expected to follow suit.